Castello di Semivicoli, Abruzzo DOC (Italy) Pecorino 2018

($20):  Pecorino, in addition to being a cheese, is also a grape, which, in the right hands, makes a captivating wine.  Moreover, I predict Pecorino will become the go-to white wine for Italian fare because its lively edginess cuts through most any dish and refreshes the palate.  Its typical grapefruit-rind bite makes it an unlikely candidate to replace the ubiquitous Pinot Grigio, frequently ordered as, “I’ll-have-a-glass-of-white-wine.”  But it is precisely that character that makes it perfect with food.  Combine Pecorino with one of Abruzzo’s top producers, Masciarelli, who owns the Castello di Semivicoli estate, and you have this easy-to-recommend wine that over delivers for the price.  Stone-y and flinty, their 2018 delivers a pleasant bite (like the cheese) and a remarkably long finish.  It’s a refreshing and penetrating mid-weight wine that stands up to full-flavored dishes such as spaghetti cacio e pepe or grilled bluefish.  Now the rub.  It’s not imported into the U.S.  Let’s hope that changes, Masciarelli.  For now, U.S. consumers will need to search for other producers’ versions.
92 Michael Apstein Feb 25, 2020